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TAHEREH SAFAVI AND AIDA VICTORIA MOUSSAVI PRESENT

BERSERKER QUEEN

The true story of a Frankish Princess who killed Viking Kings

NORMANDIE, 928 AD

     William, bastard son of a Norse conqueror and a Persian slave, lives off the scraps of his brother John, legitimate son of a Carolingian princess. If John marries another Carolingian he’ll soon control all of Europe, but his bride, Sigrid the Haughty, is pagan. She’s also smart and dangerous as any man--and William isn't just saying that because he's in love with her.

     When Sigrid attacks the Archbishop rather than accept baptism, John annuls their marriage and marches on her family lands, determined to bring them into Christendom by force. William tries to stop him: the Norse are outnumbered, and this is a suicide charge. If he marries Sigrid instead, they could rule neighbouring kingdoms as allies. But Persians are famous for fratricide, and John won’t risk empowering a bastard who might overthrow him. A desperate William narrowly saves the Norse by setting the enemy camp on fire, then covers John's murder of Sigrid's father and brother by riding in with their severed heads on a pike.

     Sigrid is dragged out to be pardoned by 'Good Prince John,' who would never execute a harmless woman. Over William's pleas, she is forcibly converted in a ceremony more like waterboarding than baptism and married to another Norse Prince, who is happy to keep her prisoner and rule her duchy. She stabs her second husband to death in his sleep. As William races back towards the fiasco, Sigrid raises an army and captures John, burning him to death on a mockery of a Norse funeral pyre.

      In the resulting power vacuum, William could very well seize the throne, if he can convince the Norse to follow a Persian bastard they believe murders captives like a mad Xerxes. Then he’ll only have to end the war and unite the kingdoms by convincing Sigrid to marry him as an equal… or he’ll have to kill her as one.

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